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Nicolas Freeling Books In Order

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Publication Order of Henri Castang Books

A Dressing of Diamond (1974)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Bugles Blowing / What Are The Bugles Blowing For? (1975)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sabine / Lake Isle (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Night Lords (1978)Description / Buy at Amazon
Castang's City (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
Wolfnight (1982)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Back of the North Wind (1983)Description / Buy at Amazon
No Part in Your Death (1984)Description / Buy at Amazon
Cold Iron (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
Lady Macbeth (1988)Description / Buy at Amazon
Not As Far As Velma (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
Those in Peril (1990)Description / Buy at Amazon
Flanders Sky / The Pretty How Town (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
You Who Know (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Seacoast of Bohemia (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Dwarf Kingdom (1996)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Van der Valk Books

Love in Amsterdam / Death in Amsterdam (1962)Description / Buy at Amazon
Because of the Cats (1963)Description / Buy at Amazon
Gun Before Butter / A Question of Loyalty (1963)Description / Buy at Amazon
Double-Barrel (1964)Description / Buy at Amazon
Criminal Conversation (1966)Description / Buy at Amazon
The King of the Rainy Country (1966)Description / Buy at Amazon
Strike Out Where Not Applicable (1967)Description / Buy at Amazon
Tsing Boum (1969)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Lovely Ladies / Over the High Side (1971)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Long Silence / Auprès De Ma Blonde (1972)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Widow (1979)Description / Buy at Amazon
One Damn Thing After Another / Arlette (1981)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sand Castles (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Kitchen Book (1970)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Kitchen and the Cook (1970)Description / Buy at Amazon
Criminal Convictions (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Village Book (2001)Description / Buy at Amazon

About Nicolas Freeling

The British writer Nicolas Freeling was a literary institution during his time, with a wide number of books produced in his back catalog. Largely focusing on mystery thrillers, he was a true master of suspense, building an air of foreboding within his stories, whilst keeping his readers guessing throughout. This all lead to him leaving a legacy, the impact of which is still felt today, as many writers continue to follow in his footsteps, entertaining generations of readers to come.

Early and Personal Life

Born in 1927, Nicolas Freeling would live a long and illustrious life, growing up in his childhood home in the UK. Raised in London, he would hold a lifelong fascination with the written word, particularly focusing on the thriller and mystery novel. Travelling extensively, he would take in huge amounts of inspiration from the world around him, feeding it all back into his work continually.

Winning numerous awards and nominations for his work over the years, he would also have his famous Van Der Valk mystery novels produced as a 1970’s television series. Produced for the ITV in Britain, it was made by Thames Television, running for a long and popular run, adapting the respective series of book. Working a variety of jobs prior to becoming a writer, he would gain a huge amount of insight, leading to him becoming remembered as the great novelist that he was.

Writing Career

The first novel to come from Nicolas Freeling was titled ‘Love in Amsterdam’, which would come out in the year of 1962. This would also be the first in his long-running series of ‘Van Der Valk collection of novels, that would follow the eponymous inspector of the same name. Later he would also ‘A Dressing of Diamonds’ in 1974, which would be the first in his second long-running franchise titled ‘Henri Castang’.

He would also write a total of eight stand-alone novels throughout the years as well, the first of which was titled ‘Valparasio’, which came out in 1964. In 1970 he would go on to release his first stand-alone title called ‘The Kitchen Book’, as cooking would also be an interest of his, releasing two more on the subject later on. A spokesperson for his art craft too, he would write ‘Criminal Convictions’ in 1994, which would analyze the genre of crime fiction, thus cementing his reputation as one of the true greats of his generation.

Criminal Conversation

Originally published in 1966 through the Vintage Books publishing label, this would first come out in the month of March that year. Marking the fifth title in the ongoing ‘Van Der Valk’ series of novels, this continues on from the last with another self-contained mystery for the eponymous police inspector. A classic collection of titles, this series would run for a total of thirteen books overall, along with a number of omnibus editions too.

Following the character of police inspector Piet Van Der Valk, this series is a fun an intriguing collection of mystery novels. With the character of Valk in the lead role, it sees him working a series of cases alongside Arlette Van Der Valk, his wife, who’s herself a gourmet cook. Set in the Amsterdam in the Netherlands, this franchise is very much a series of its particular time and location, essentially bringing the era to life. This means that it’s definitely a must for any fans of the author, or those simply looking to gain a deeper insight into the mystery genre overall.

Hot on the case once more, Van Der Valk this time is following the lead left by a mysterious letter, one which alludes to a man named Cabestan being murdered. With the murderer himself being named within the letter, this takes Valk on a trail of lies, deception and intrigue, as he aims to find who wrote the letter itself. This leads to him crossing paths with Carl Merckel, a rich banker working at the Lutz Brothers merchant bank as the managing director. Facing an accusation of homicide, Carl insists that it really does have nothing to do with his wife, as Valk aims to uncover the truth behind the lies. Who is telling the truth though, and can he find the real killer in time? Where will they possibly strike next? What will come of their criminal conversation?

A Dwarf Kingdom

First brought out through the House of Stratus publishing house, this would initially come in 1996 on the 1st of January. With it being the sixteenth and final title in the Henri Castang series, it acts as a conclusion to the the overall franchise as a whole. Giving the readers one final case, it was preceded by sixteen other titles, the last one being ‘The Seacoast of Bohemia’ published in 1994. This would also be the final franchise based series for Freeling as an author too, with the final Van Der Valk book coming out in 1989 titled ‘Sand Castles’, with it being the thirteenth book in its respective series.

Marking the final book, this provides complete closure to the series overall, wrapping up all the loose ends, whilst also offering a farewell to the ever intrepid Inspector. Giving fans what they want, it manages to bring back a number of elements that they’ve come to love, whilst also providing some new ones along the way. The world that it inhabits is also extremely well drawn too, creating a sense of ambiance that at once seems familiar, yet somewhat bitter sweet in the face of this one final case. Taking the readers on a journey, it’s clear to see why it gained such a large audience during its initial run, and will continue to do so for years to follow.

Looking to retire and live the quiet life with his wife, Inspector Henri Castang aims to settle down in Biarritz, living in a villa that they inherited. That’s when the granddaughter of Castang is kidnapped, leading Henri himself to believe that it is none other than a sinister real-estate mogul. The individual in question has been loitering around their estate, apparently with his eyes on their land, looking to acquire it. Now it is up to Henri Castang to put his detective skill to use, as he’s in a race against the clock to find the culprit before it’s too late. Who are they and what do they want? Can he find them in time, and where has she gone to? How will they all fare in a dwarf kingdom?

Book Series In Order » Authors » Nicolas Freeling

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